Explore lookouts - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Ice last on north side out of sun
Still quite doable

snowshoeing
3 days ago

Lots of snow once you leave the forest. Ended up putting on snow shoes. Turned around before descending into the meadow. To much snow, breaking trail most of the way and ran out of day light. Road is rough coming in so plan on an extra 1/2 hr just to dodge pot holes.

A little busy but the view from the top was absolutely amazing! The trail was icy in several spots. Should have brought some light ice cleats but it was still doable.

Always an amazing hike!!

on Red Top Lookout Trail

hiking
4 days ago

11.12.2018
First time on this hike and it was worth it. The road is bumpy and lots of potholes. The trail was only a half a mile up from the parking lot. Incline is steep but not super challenging to get up. There was a layer of snow coming up the road and some snow at the top of the lookout. I’d definitely be going back again. The view was clear and crisp up there.

A 360 view at the top! First hour is tiring then it actually gets more gradual as you get closer. Today, in November, it had snow about half way up or the last third. it's all packed down though. you don't need spikes but polls are helpful.

Definition of a steady incline from the start to finish but wasn’t too difficult. Views from the top are incredible!

on Black Butte Trail

5 days ago

Amazing views!

hiking
5 days ago

A great hike with breathtaking views. Hiked this today with a family of 5, 10 years being the youngest and a energetic dog. Mid-November and it was a cool start, still plenty of hikers! Very popular trail. I was worried reading some of these reviews that this was going to be challenging. The kids were just about to think it was when we saw the watch towers and knew we were close. We used a Garmin and found it to be about 2.4 miles to the top. (and as stated in other reviews, it is up, the whole way!). We made it in about 70 minutes up and 50 minutes down, in good tennis shoes, nothing fancy. Path is relatively soft and easy to walk, top has more rock “stairs” and can require more careful footing. As stated, it was cool today, if hiking on a warm day, start early and bring plenty of water. Had a great time, highly recommend!

It is 35 minutes from Sisters, and all but the last mile+ were good/great roads. The last little bit is rough but doable. Not a lot of parking, both lots full when we left and it is not peak season. But there is a pit toilet at the trailhead.

We are an active family, young children and inactive people will likely need to take their time.

Sweet trail, pretty easy, and theres a super cool helicopter pad and lookout at the top! Amazing drive to the trailhead too.

Yeah yes! I did this trail is incredible it’s very hard I feel proud of my health, on the top it was a big snow you must need snow shose, , the view is amazing, Good Luck for everyone!!!

Completed this today! The road was the most difficult part for me today. I drove my Hyundai Tucson all the way up. Bottomed our three times. This road is doable I’m AWD and 4x4 vehicles with clearance. The trail was awesome! Light snow at the start and as I gained elevation the snow for deeper of course. I used my spikes on the way down only. Snowshoes would have helped in a few areas but not necessary to complete the trail. Lookout is locked up for the winter but the hike was very well worth the extra effort. DO NOT do this trail in the fall/winter unless you are comfortable with self arrest, know avalanche basics as well as winter survival. There were persons this trail that got a little sketchy. Oh and you can’t be afraid of heights with the added snow the trail is steep and even made me a little edgy at times. Awesome hike!

Tried this on 10/29/18, my SUV couldn’t get up the steep road. The people coming down said snow was pretty deep and you needed snow shoes. I turned around.

trail running
15 days ago

Good technical trail for running. A lot of gain on the way to the top. Will have to come back when its sunny and clear, nothing but most, rain and the occasional frozen rain waves. There are places snow is either on or next to the trail.

Great trail! Very rainy and foggy, but still amazing views and flora. It is longer than the beta shows. I got kind of confused between the water washes and the trail near the top and my phones GPS was not reading correctly.

Very windy at the top but well worth the hike to the top , wish it was much clearer. Started at 7 am and was done by 11 pm .

We randomly woke up Friday (10/26) morn and decided to head up! It was really warm here in Arlington! Got to the trailhead at 9am and reached the peak at 11! As we slowly (so many terrible potholes)descended up the road it started to get very windy and the fog was so irie! The different landscapes were so beautiful and the trail very wet, we pretty much walked in water the whole time but no big deal! The saddest part was this was my first time and the fog never cleared and covered the whole view :( We were alone all morning and didn't see another group till we were half way down, then we passed 4 more groups all clumped up! Overall it was a perfectly irie October day, but I will be going back on a clear day to see the view I missed!

We left the trailhead in the dark and still weren’t the first to arrive at the lookout. The guy there said we could share so it worked out great. Clear weather, didn’t even freeze at night. Watched sunset and sunrise and hiked to tarns and bell pass. Tons of day hikers came and went. The trail is boulders in a couple areas below, easy to cross the almost dry river. The twin Sisters range is amazing from up there. Trail got a bit steep when we were just about to the lookout. I’m 68, you can do it too. Mt Baker is my favorite anyway.

hiking
20 days ago

Wonderful hike with an amazing view of Mt Rainier at the peak.

However, the main road to the trailhead is closed for the season. We did not know this. So it was an additional 5 miles from the parking lot to trailhead.

All in all an extra 10 miles, but it was worth it.

hiking
22 days ago

We loved this hike! Beautiful views once you get up out of the trees (the views within the trees were still pretty). This is an uphill hike, the entire way- there was no reprieve. We had to stop a few times to catch our breath. The views from the top were worth it! Two lookouts to see, one is boarded up and the other is active. We could see 8 mountain peaks, even through the slight haze. There were a few 2wd vehicles at the trailhead, though the road is a little rough.

it was breathtaking

A beautiful hike!
I would suggest using a 4 wheel drive, or high clearance vehicle. The road to the parking is plagued with potholes. That makes the journey a lot longer to park. There are no facilities here.
It wasn't too busy, and it was a gorgeous fall day!

hiking
23 days ago

It was amazing trial ,worth spending time and beautiful scenic view !! everyone should visit and have fun!!

hiking
23 days ago

It was amazing trial ,worth spending time and beautiful scenic view !! everyone should visit and have fun!!

hiking
24 days ago

10/19 (Fri midday): Picture perfect views at the peak and all along the way. We had a clear, sunny, warm autumn day with no wind. Not one, but two clear blue lakes along a mostly flat trail to a short, steep climb to the peak/fire lookout and stunning Mt Rainier looming super large, so close you could almost touch. Big wow for my east coast guests. Popular hike but not overrun. All mountain hikes I know require driving a long gravel road like this route in, so not sure why everyone is so freaked out by it? Road is in great shape and well maintained, as you would expect with a back road in any National Park. Handled it in a rented Impala no problemo.

Did this hike today, Sunday 10/21. The trail is in great shape and I could not experience and iced rocks as reported before. The NF-4200 definitely has quite a few and big potholes. I drove over carefully but you better plan 30-45min for the last few miles on the dirt road to the trailhead.

Temperatures were awesome. Did it all around in a t-shirt and it was mostly on the warmer side.

I recorded 4.75km one way from the trailhead to the fire lookout at the top.

Don't forget your Northwest Forest Pass;)

Amazing hike! Feeling my muscle pain now) I read and expected rocks on top, but didn’t know that it’s almost rock climbing. There wasn’t snow.

hiking
25 days ago

I did this during the summer and it was definitely worth it. The views when you get on top are awesome! Before you get back to your car, stop by Mowich Lake and check it out.

hiking
25 days ago

This is one of my top ten favorite hikes of all time. The views were stunning (especially of Mount Shasta) and the terrain was really different. It was fun to scale the rocks and make our way up to the stop. We drove into the waypoint which was right near the official trailhead and we'd recommend others to do the same. I think a 2wd car could make it there. It took about an hour and 45 to get up and then an hour and 30 back down. We were hiking with our 6 mo old pup who had a blast. Think some dogs could get scared with the rocks and ledge but she did great and it was super fun to watch her navigate.

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